"Don't sweat the small stuff" as the old saying goes. Meaning: don't waste your time on things that are unimportant.
Unfortunately there's a lot of sweat-soaked small stuff in the world of customer feedback. Here are some things that often suck up a lot of time and effort relative to how important they are:
- The exact wording of survey questions.
- The graphic design and layout of reports and dashboards.
- The precise details of how metrics are calculated (spending too much time on this is a warning sign that you might have fallen into the Metric-Centric Trap).
- Deciding whether individual surveys should be thrown out (this is another warning sign of the Metric-Centric Trap).
- Presenting survey trend data to senior leadership.
Instead, you should be focusing on some of these things that don't get nearly as much attention for the amount of benefit they bring:
- Closing the loop with customers.
- Providing immediate coaching of employees based on customer feedback.
- Regularly updating the survey to keep it relevant to the business.
- Doing root cause analysis of common customer problems.
- Keeping senior leadership actively engaged in advancing a customer-centric culture.
The difference between the small stuff and the big stuff is that the small stuff tends to be (relatively) easy and feels important. The big stuff often requires sustained effort and commitment but pays off in the end. It's the difference between an exercise bicycle and a real bike: both take work, but only one will get you anywhere.